Man charged with child abuse for inflicting injuries with a belt

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BRECKENRIDGE HILLS, MO (KPLR) - A Breckenridge Hills man is wanted for abusing his ex-girlfriend’s children. Police say he struck an 8 year-old boy and 2 year-old girl with a belt, causing injury to both of them.

According to Breckenridge Hills police, 28 year-old Marcus Allen got angry with his girlfriend’s son over breakfast, because the boy ate an entire honey bun, instead of saving half of it for his sister.  That’s when police say Allen beat the 8 year-old with a belt as punishment, causing linear abrasions with broken skin across his back.

“Then he went to school, had told the teacher that his back hurt, and that’s when she found the injuries,” explains Breckenridge Hills Police Captain Scott Robinson.

Robinson says the boy finally admitted to authorities what had happened over breakfast.  He also told police that his mom’s boyfriend had hit his two year-old sister for urinating on herself.  According to court documents, a hospital exam revealed wounds on the girl, consistent with injuries from a belt lashing.

News of this abuse is devastating to Crisis Nursery CEO DiAnne Mueller. The non-profit provides free resources for parents and a safe place for kids in need, whenever they need it.

Mueller says striking a child is never the right way to discipline: “Perhaps at that moment, you have power over them and they’ll stop doing what they’re doing, but the long-term effect of that does not work. They don’t want to please their parent then; they’re simply afraid of them.”

Mueller wants kids to know they should never be afraid to speak up if they’re being abused.  “There are wonderful teachers and principals and school counselors that are there, and they want to help, and they are mandatory reporters. The law says they have to do something about it, and they will,” she explains.

Allen is now charged with two counts of felony child abuse. Police say he’s no longer in contact with these two young victims.

To contact the St. Louis Crisis Nursery, you can call their 24-hour hotline at 314-768-3201. If you’d like to help, this non-profit is always looking for volunteers.

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